At Asheville Music Tools we consider ourselves to be but humble toolmakers. Our mission is to give you:
Tools to inspire your creative muse
We believe in a rigorous, take-no-shortcuts approach to our work as engineers and artists. We take pride in our accomplishments, and we design our tools to be fun and intuitive to use. We want you to have a deep connection with our tools to inspire joy in the creative process.
Each tool we make is inspected twice during the production process: first by treating it as an electrical device and verifying the physical and electrical performance, and second by using it as a musical instrument, critically listening to every setting and function. This ensures that we deliver the highest standard of consistency and quality.
We are committed not just to quality, but also to integrity, our community and the planet. We use the most sustainable parts and processes we can find, avoiding any that are harmful to our environment. We protect our people by avoiding conflict minerals and materials. We work with local vendors and manufacturers whenever possible, many right here in the mountains of Western North Carolina. This guarantees quality, provides jobs to our community, and reduces the environmental impact of excessive shipping and transportation.
We support music and the arts in our local community and provide mentorships and learning assistance to young engineers and hobbyists learning in the field. We remember to take a moment to be present for newcomers who wish to grow and learn skills we have. And we place ethics, joy, love, health and quality of life before profit and growth.
Asheville Music Tools (AMpT) is founded by Rick “Hawker” Shaich. After a career as a design engineer for a well-known musical instrument manufacturer in the synthesizer field and for other companies, Hawker is venturing out to explore his creative freedom and bring a new generation of audio tools into the world.
Hawker is the hardware engineer behind some of the most sought-after analog effects in the industry. Many of these are now out of production and hard to obtain. If you are in the music world, you likely have used a device Hawker designed or worked on. It was that demand for his classics, previously designed for other companies, that motivated him to start creating and selling his own products.
Hawker has been interested in sound and electronics since building a DC motor from scratch as a pre-teen. Being unable to afford pedals for his guitar, he started building stomp boxes at the age of 12, building Craig Anderton and PAiA projects from salvaged TVs and military surplus parts. His addiction to electronics, circuit boards, soldering, PCB layout and vintage analog test equipment has taken him through a lifelong passion for electronic design with many audio companies including major players in the synthesizer, studio, effects and pedal markets.
When not designing electronics, Hawker lives in a small round house in the woods of Asheville North Carolina with his partner and his (once feral) cats. Hawker is originally from Minnesota, but moved to North Carolina in 1990 due to his love of the mountains, outdoors and the vibrant music, arts, and community minded culture there. He enjoys live music, camping, hiking and backpacking as well as carpentry, woodworking, and alternative energy and participates in the Rainbow Family gatherings where he enjoys cooking and applying his form of low tech/high tech backwoods technologies.
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